President Barack Obama had originally hoped to have the successor to Start in his pocket and ratified before going to the review conference of the NPT, which this year will be dominated by fears of a nuclear arms race in the Middle East. While the establishment of a nuclear-free zone in Middle East has broad support, Israel has flatly rejected Egypt’s demand to join the NPT as a non-weapons state. Egypt is determined to press its demand for an international conference in 2011 with both Iran and Israel at the table, and has threatened to withdraw its support for other areas of the treaty, should the United States go cool on the idea. And all this before Mr Obama attempts to pursue US ratification of the comprehensive test ban treaty, the cornerstone of nuclear arms control.
US-Russia nuclear deal: Two tribes don’t go to war | Editorial | Comment is free | The Guardian